Friday, 30 September 2016

Deepwater Horizon Movie Review By Carleton Rutter

Director: Peter Berg
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Dylan O’Brien, Kate Hudson and Kurt Russell

What’s it all about?

Based on the true story of the offshore drilling rig Deepwater Horizon, which exploded in April 2010 and created the worst oil spill in U.S. history.

What are my thoughts?

Over the years, Mark Wahlberg is an actor who has grown on me a lot. Although it was in Three Kings (1999) in which he co-starred with George Clooney and Ice Cube that I first came to see him as an actor. It was Perfect Storm (2000) (Also co-starring George Clooney) that I really took to him. Since then I have followed his career with interest.

In this movie, Wahlberg takes centre stage as Mike Williams, one of the principal oil rig workers who says goodbye to his wife, Felicia (Kate Hudson) and daughter to spend another three weeks on the job. He is joined by Jimmy “Mr Jimmy” Harrell (Kurt Russell) the chief engineer and head operational honcho. When they arrive on the rig, they find that a crucial cement job hasn't taken place. Donald Vidrine (John Malkovich) of BP (the owning company) Poo poo’s Mr Jimmy’s concerns, ordering more tests and in doing so starts a chain reaction that leads to destruction of the rig.

​Deepwater Horizon is a thrilling and extremely well made disaster movie, that did not disappoint. Berg and the writers do a superb job at making the operation and problems of working on a rig accessible to the layman. This starts with Wahlberg’s character explaining to his daughter what his job entails and what the rig is about, making the important distinction that Deepwater Horizon is a floating exploration rig, not a fixed oil rig. This scene was reminiscent of Tom Hank’s character Jim Lovell in Apollo 13 as he explained the mission to the moon to his son. This is further aided by no nonsense descriptive subtitles throughout the movie that help you further understand what is unfolding on the screen.


​The movie is universally well acted. Mark Wahlberg puts in if not the best – one of the best performances of his career. This movie marks the second time he has worked with director Berg after Lone Survivor (2013) which was also based on a true story.

Kurt Russell is also excellent as the chiselled and experienced senior hand. John Malkovich in support as the corporate douche is spot on, perfect casting there. Dylan O’ Brien of The Maze Runner fame is good in support. Special mention should also be made to Gina Rodriguez who played Andrea Fleytas, the only woman on the crew. Kate Hudson as Wahlberg’s on screen wife (And real life step daughter of Russell) was very good, but had little to do other than stand nervously in front of a TV or hang on a phone.


Deepwater Horizon is amazingly shot and is a totally immersive experience. I did not see it in IMAX but I think it would be pretty mind blowing with that screen. Kudos goes out to the crew as well for recreating an entire rig just for the movie in Chalmette, Louisiana.It is reported to be the biggest single set ever created for a movie. As regards the movie itself, although I knew what was going to happen, the tension is expertly cranked up so when the explosions do start I was completely locked into the plight of these brave men and woman. It also does a tremendous job of opening a window on this profession and how damn right brave these people are on a daily basis and horrors they face when things go wrong. As for my empathy for the crew you get to know more back story for Wahlberg’s character than anyone else's but that didn’t make me feel any less for men I didn't know. When the movie changes gear to full-on disaster movie, it is incredibly tense.

I highly recommend you see Deepwater Horizon, it is a fitting tribute to the disaster which is to this day the worst oil rig explosion and subsequent oil spill in US history. If you are looking for a tense, well acted, well shot movie that does not outstay its welcome (1 hour 45 mins) check it out.

Deepwater Horizon is now on general release in the UK.


Review By Carleton Rutter

My Scientology Movie - Official Trailer



Inspired by the Church’s use of filming techniques, and aided by ex-members of the organization Theroux uses actors to replay some incidents people claim they experienced as members in an attempt to better understand the way it operates. In a bizarre twist, it becomes clear that the Church is also making a film about Louis Theroux. Suffused with a good dose of humor and moments worthy of a Hollywood script, MY SCIENTOLOGY MOVIE is stranger than fiction.

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Warren Beatty's RULES DON'T APPLY - New trailer


An aspiring young actress (Lily Collins) and her ambitious young driver (Alden Ehrenreich) struggle hopefully with the absurd eccentricities of the wildly unpredictable billionaire (Warren Beatty) whom they work for.

It’s Hollywood, 1958. Small town beauty queen and devout Baptist virgin Marla Mabrey (Collins), under contract to the infamous Howard Hughes (Beatty), arrives in Los Angeles. At the airport, she meets her driver Frank Forbes (Ehrenreich), who is engaged to be married to his 7th grade sweetheart and is a deeply religious Methodist. Their instant attraction not only puts their religious convictions to the test, but also defies Hughes’ #1 rule: no employee is allowed to have any relationship whatsoever with a contract actress. Hughes’ behaviour intersects with Marla and Frank in very separate and unexpected ways, and as they are drawn deeper into his bizarre world, their values are challenged and their lives are changed.

Monday, 26 September 2016

The Magnificent Seven Movie Review by Carleton Rutter

Director: Antoine Fuqua

Cast: Denzil Washington, Chris Pratt, Ethan Hawke, Vincent D’Onofrio, Byung-Hun Lee, Manuel Garcia-Rulfo and Martin Sensmier


What’s it all about?

Seven gun men in the old west gradually come together to help a poor village against a gang of murderers and thieves.


What are my thoughts?

The Magnificent Seven marks Antoine Fuqua’s first foray into the Western genre. It’s the third time however that he has teamed up with Denzil Washington after The Equalizer (2015) and Training Day (2001).

This movie is a remake of the 1960 classic starring Yul Brynner and Steve Mcqueen et al, which in itself is a remake of the legendary movie Seven Samurai (1954) directed by one of the masters of cinema, Akira Kurosawa.

It’s been a while since a Western featuring such a strong cast has surfaced. Westerns though are timeless. Within the genre itself, directors can choose which path to take. Whether it be action-orientated, a quiet character study piece or even a comedy. It’s one of the most diverse genres in Hollywood.

​Hanging it’s hat in September therefore as opposed to a full stand off in front of the townsfolk with some of the bigger spectacle movies of the summer, led me to believe that this movie was not really summer box office material.


Well, nothing could be further from the truth, The Magnificent Seven would have been probably quicker on the draw than most summer movies. I had a great time with this movie. Before I get into some of the specifics, it was just great to see a Western again. Western’s are one of my favourite genres.

At the heart of the movie is of course the seven men who slowly come together throughout the first act. There is great chemistry throughout the group. Denzil Washington who largely plays Brynner’s character (Although different name) is sublime in the lead. Economy of movement, expression and emotion. I felt he played this part in a very similar way to his character in The Equalizer last year. Subdued confidence. He was superb.

Chris Pratt as Josh Faraday a sharp shooter with a penchant for card tricks and magic was also very good, but at times I felt he was a little misplaced, a modern man in a period movie. Vincent D’Onofrio was also excellent as Jack Horne a high pitched one man axe wielding band who decides to join the gang to help fight the bad guys. Ethan Hawke and Byung-hun Lee also had excellent chemistry as a double act who made two more of the seven. Manuel Garcia-Rulfo as Vasquez an outlaw of Spanish decent and Martin Sensmier as Red Harvest a Native American round the posse off nicely.

On the flip side, Peter Sarsgaard as Bartholomew Bogue the movies main antagonist is effective but underused. He's a nasty piece of work make no doubt, but his character is not really developed. Is therefore one note and ultimately comes off as a weak villain.

As for the movie itself it is beautifully shot, featuring stunning vistas and brilliant tracking cinematography. Kudos to Fuqua for producing such a competent looking Western fresh out the gate. The score which was originally slated to be solely completed by James Horner had to be rounded out by Simon Franglen after the tragic and untimely passing of the great James Horner. The result is the score is nicely understated with a catchy signature tune that develops throughout the movie. For those of you who pine for the classic original score by Elmer Bernstein, fear not stay sat during the end credits and you can sing to your hearts content.


There is a nice light touch that trickles throughout the movie with some great moments of humour. Predictably most come from Pratt’s character but D’Onofrio is also very funny. There is also a particularly humorous scene when the gang train the town on how to defend themselves.

After the relevant graphic violence as well of last years The Equalizer, I thought that Fuqua would similarly take his opportunity to make his mark in this genre. He decides though to damp it down with the majority of the violence taking place off screen, firmly placing this movie in a more accessible position for families with older children.

The pacing of the movie is good, although the first act does take a little while to get going. Fuqua and the writers though do a great job of developing the central characters and our empathy for them. Also developing our sympathy for the town. This is in large part down to the excellent performance by Haley Bennett as Emma Cullen the lady who hires Washington. Everything is therefore nicely ratcheted up that leads to the inevitable show down finale which does not disappoint

I highly recommend The Magnificent Seven, will it be seen as a classic Western in years to come – no. But hopefully it will be seen as the movie that breathed new life into a timeless genre. Antoine Fuqua set out to make a balls to the wall action adventure and in that, indeed he did. So saddle up, partner - the boys are back in town.

The Magnificent Seven is on general release in the UK from today.

Movie Review by Carleton Rutter
http://www.moviemanuk.net

Competition: Win Invasion Earth on DVD

Invasion Earth is released on DVD October 3rd. And to celebrate we have a great competition for you and 3 copies on DVD to give away.

Synopsis:
Famous self-help Guru, Dr. Carson travels to his new facility with eight young addicts with the aim of helping them through their troubles and integrating them back into society. Unfortunately for them society is about to be dismantled as a military force, not from this world, begins a hostile take-over.

Can these youngsters escape the facility and if they do, will it even make a difference?

Reviews
"You will not be able to look away" - 28DaysLaterAnalysis.com

"Worth checking out" - CinemaCrazed.com

"Will keep your attention the entire time and even had me begging for more. 4.5/5" - RepulsiveReviews.com

Win This:
Invasion Earth [DVD]

To enter all you have to do is answer this easy question...


Competition Closed


Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 10-10-16
2. No alternative prize is available
3. When the competition ends as indicated on this page, any and all entries received after this point will not count and emails blacklisted due to not checking this page first.
4. Winners will be chosen randomly and will be informed via email.

Competition: Win Fight Valley on DVD

Fight Valley is released on DVD October 3rd. And to celebrate we have a great competition for you and 3 copies on DVD to give away.

Synopsis:
When the body of a young martial arts fighter is found on the rough streets of Fight Valley, her sister, Windsor, arrives to try and uncover the truth of her mysterious death.

She soon realises that in order to survive in this town she will have to fight. Training with the most feared and respected ex-fighter around, Windsor prepares herself to come face-to-face with her sister’s killer in a battle for justice.

Stars
Susie Celek, Miesha Tate, Holly Holm, Cris Cyborg

Directed by Rob Hawk

Win This:
Fight Valley [DVD] [2016]

To enter all you have to do is answer this easy question...


Competition Closed


Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 10-10-16
2. No alternative prize is available
3. When the competition ends as indicated on this page, any and all entries received after this point will not count and emails blacklisted due to not checking this page first.
4. Winners will be chosen randomly and will be informed via email.

Competition: Win Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV on DVD

Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV is released on DVD October 3rd. And to celebrate we have a great competition for you and 3 copies on DVD to give away.

Synopsis:
Kingslaive is told through the eyes of King Regis, while Final Fantasy XV follows the journey of Prince Noctis. The two tales entwine to weave a stirring story of father and son. The film also sheds light onto deeper discoveries of the game world.

Featuring beautiful, state-of-the-art CG technology in all its glory, Kingslaive goes beyond the game franchise to deliver a true action film experience—an epic adventure for all. The magical kingdom of Lucis is home to the sacred Crystal, and the menacing empire of Niflheim is determined to steal it. King Regis of Lucis (Sean Bean) commands an elite force of soldiers called the Kingsglaive.

Wielding their king’s magic, Nyx (Aaron Paul) and his fellow soldiers fight to protect Lucis. As the overwhelming military might of the empire bears down, King Regis is faced with an impossible ultimatum – to marry his son, Prince Noctis to Princess Lunafreya of Tenebrae (Lena Headey), captive of Niflheim, and surrender his lands to the empire’s rule. Although the king concedes, it becomes clear that the empire will stop at nothing to achieve their devious goals, with only the Kingsglaive standing between them and world domination.

Win This:
Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV [DVD] [2016]

To enter all you have to do is answer this easy question...


Competition Closed


Copyright line: © 2016 Square Enix Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 10-10-16
2. No alternative prize is available
3. When the competition ends as indicated on this page, any and all entries received after this point will not count and emails blacklisted due to not checking this page first.
4. Winners will be chosen randomly and will be informed via email.

6 Of The Best Cult Teen Horrors


Every few years, a film comes along that speaks to teens and becomes a cult hit. From the iconic Ghostface calling his victims in Scream to the blood-soaked prom prank in Carrie, these moments are relatable and overdramatic – perfect for the younger generation. Friend Request is the latest in this dark and twisted trend, where social media is used to terrorise a group of students.

Laura has 800 friends on social media, but when she accepts a friend request from a quiet girl in her class she quickly realises how dangerous the click of a mouse can be. Soon a dark spirit takes control of Laura’s account and one by one, her friends are killed in the most brutal ways. As part of the release of Friend Request on Blu-rayTM and DVD now, we wanted to take a look at some of the best teen cult horrors of all time.

Carrie (1976)
Carrie received two Academy Award nominations, and launched the careers of various young actors including John Travolta. The film follows the shy teenager Carrie, who has an overbearing mother and is bullied by many students at her school. When she becomes the victim of a cruel prank to crown her Prom Queen and dump a bucket of pig’s blood over her on stage, Carrie unleashes her telekinetic fury upon innocent and guilty students alike, destroying her high school gymnasium and trapping the students inside to feel her wrath.

Halloween (1978)
Arguably one of the most successful horror franchises of all time, the Halloween saga began with a moment which shocked cinemagoers everywhere. When six year-old Michael Myers dressed in a clown costume brutally murders his sister by stabbing her with a kitchen knife, the child is committed to a psychiatric hospital until he escapes at the age of 21. The psychotic murderer returns to his home town and begins stalking high school student Laurie Strode, killing anyone who gets in his way.

Scream (1996)
This American slasher mocked the clichés of horror movies by openly referencing classics like Halloween and Friday the 13th. The film introduces the mysterious and now infamous killer known as ‘Ghostface,’ who creepily calls and taunts his victims before murdering them. The film focuses on Sidney Prescott (Neve Campbell) and her friends, who try to work out the identity of Ghostface while he goes on a killing spree until only Sidney remains, or so we think…

I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997)
Another classic from the 90s, I Know What You Did Last Summer follows four friends a year after they killed a fisherman with their car and dumped his body in the water. When Julie (Jennifer Love Hewitt) receives a mysterious letter claiming that her crime was seen, the group set off to track down who they think is responsible for the note as they are persued by the ‘figure in a rain slick.’.

A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
Freddy Krueger made his way onto our screens in 1984 wielding his blade-fixed glove, stalking and slashing the teens of Springwood, Ohio in their dreams, or rather, nightmares. Johnny Depp received his on-screen debut as Glen Lantz, a stubborn teenage boy who refuses to accept that the nightmare murderer is real despite seeing his friends and girlfriend fatally slashed by an unseen force.

Friend Request (2016)
A modern day cult horror movie in the making, Friend Request is a breath of fresh air for the genre. Using social media as the medium to strike terror into teens, the film brings horror into the 21st century by highlighting how much we share online and how that could be used against us. Laura is one of the most popular girls at college, and suddenly receives a friend request from the awkward and lonely Marina. After accepting, Marina becomes jealous and angry when Laura doesn’t hang out with her, prompting an unfriending. But this is a decision that Laura will live to regret, if she can survive that is.

FRIEND REQUEST IS OUT ON BLU-RAYTM AND DVD NOW!

Thursday, 22 September 2016

Batman: Return Of The Caped Crusaders


#HolyOneNightOnly

IN CINEMAS FOR ONE NIGHT ONLY ON OCTOBER 17

Embark on a journey into the iconic past with Batman: Return of the Caped Crusaders -available on Blu-ray and DVD November 7 and Digital Download from October 24 starring the legendary Adam West (Batman), Burt Ward (Robin) and Julie Newmar (Catwoman).

It’s back to the 1960s as Batman and Robin spring into action when Gotham City is threatened by Batman’s most-evil opponents – Penguin, The Joker, Riddler and Catwoman. The four Super-Villains have combined their wicked talents to hatch a plot so nefarious that the Dynamic Duo will need to go to outer space (and back) to foil their arch enemies and restore order in Gotham City.

Deepwater Horizon - real events seen on screen


There’s something about a true story being played out on the big screen that makes a film heightened in some way, as if the audience is experiencing the drama through the real life characters and, if done properly, feel everything that they feel too.

To celebrate the release of Deepwater Horizon, based on the true story of the devastating 2010 incident and starring Mark Wahlberg, Kate Hudson, Dylan O’Brien, Gina Rodriguez, Kurt Russell and John Malkovich, we’ve taken a look at some of the greatest true stories ever told on film.

Captain Phillips
After his ship is targeted by Somali pirates, Captain Phillips (Tom Hanks,) must use his skills and cunning as he finds himself in an ensuing standoff with erratic leader Muse (Barkhad Abdi), who has his eyes set on taking the ship and crew for ransom in return for millions of dollars. Temporarily outwitting the pirates, the ship’s crew cut the power and capture Muse, but when the rest of the gang take Phillips hostage in return, the brave captain offers himself in order to keep his crew safe. The final scenes are a claustrophobic race against the clock, as Tom Hanks plays out the traumatic and incredibly brave actions of a real life hero.

The Impossible
When the Boxing Day Tsunami devastated south east Asia in 2004, one of the most unbelievable true stories emerged and was stunningly portrayed in The Impossible. Henry (Ewan McGregor), his wife Maria (Naomi Watts), and their three sons travel to a picturesque Thailand resort for and exotic Christmas break. After the tsunami strikes, the family finds themselves separated and suffering. Henry and Maria fight against the odds to protect their children and ultimately bring the family back together again, stumbling upon moments of heart-wrenching tragedy and experiencing acts of unbelievable compassion along the way.

The 33
Struggling to support his family, Mario (Antonio Banderas) along with other miners, take on extra shifts in the unstable San Jose Mine. When the decision is made to keep the mine open, regardless of the safety issues, the men know they have no choice but to carry on. A few hours into being in the mine, the ground begins to shake and boulders the size of the Empire State Building rain down upon them, collapsing the escape tunnels and leaving 33 men trapped 2,300ft below ground. Through the tireless campaigning of their families on the surface, 58 days later and countless efforts to find a way out, the rescue capsule finally reaches the men. One of the most unlikely stories ever brought to screen, The 33 is tense, uplifting and the will give you the biggest sigh of relief ever.

Everest
Not for those with vertigo. When mountaineer Rob Hall (Jason Clarke) gathers a team of eager adventurers to climb the mammoth that is Mount Everest – things quickly take a turn for the worst once the group reach the summit, with some faulty equipment and an incoming menacing storm heading their way.  Some stylized scenes from the film were borrowed from the 1998 documentary of the same name, which really adds to the realism of the tragic story. Clarke is joined by an all-star cast, including Keira Knightley, Jake Gyllenhaal and Emily Watson.

127 Hours
127 Hours tells the horrifying true story of mountain climber Aron Ralston's (James Franco) remarkable effort to save his own life after a boulder crashes down on his arm and traps him, leaving him isolated in the middle of Utah. The five days that follow sees Ralston realise that no one is going to find him, taking it upon himself to ensure his survival …regardless of the pain. As Aron pushes himself to his limits, surviving the elements and overcoming his fears enough to scale a 65 foot wall and hike eight miles, hallucinating and close to death, 127 Hours will leave you squirming in your seat.

Deepwater Horizon
After saying goodbye to his wife (Kate Hudson) and daughter for 21 days, Mike Williams (Mark Wahlberg) makes his way to work on the Deepwater Horizon, an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico. Tension builds as tell-tale signs of the rig’s problems are felt by the experienced crew, but ignored by visiting supervisor Donald Vidrine (John Malkovich). Within minutes of Vitrine’s ill-advised order to begin pumping oil, the rig explodes bringing tonnes of oil down on the crew, eventually setting the rig on fire. As real life hero Mike attempts to get his team to safety, you can feel your pulse pounding.

DEEPWATER HORIZON COMES TO CINEMAS SEPTEMBER 29




Wednesday, 21 September 2016

DOG EAT DOG Movie TRAILER (Nicolas Cage - Thriller, 2016)


A crew of ex-cons are hired by a Cleveland mafioso to kidnap the baby of a rival mobster.

Storks (2016) Trouble Clip


Storks
In cinemas September 22

Storks deliver babies...or at least they used to. Now they deliver packages for global internet giant Cornerstore.com. Junior, the company's top delivery stork, is about to be promoted when he accidentally activates the Baby Making Machine, producing an adorable and wholly unauthorised baby girl. Desperate to deliver this bundle of trouble before the boss gets wise, Junior and his friend Tulip, the only human on Stork Mountain, race to make their first-ever baby drop - in a wild and revealing journey that could make more than one family whole and restore the storks' true mission in the world.

Hidden Figures | Official HD Trailer


HIDDEN FIGURES is the incredible untold story of Katherine Johnson (TarajiP. Henson), Dorothy Vaughn (Octavia Spencer) and Mary Jackson (JanelleMonae)—brilliant African-American women working at NASA, who served as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history: the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit, a stunning achievement that restored the nation’s confidence, turned around the Space Race, and galvanised the world.  The visionary trio crossed all gender and race lines to inspire generations to dream big.

Directed by Ted Melfi

Starring TarajiP. Henson, Octavia Spencer, JanelleMonáe, Kirsten Dunst, Jim Parsons, Mahershala Ali, Aldis Hodge, Glen Powell and Kevin Costner

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

PASSENGERS - Official Trailer (HD)


Synopsis: Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt are two passengers onboard a spaceship transporting them to a new life on another planet. The trip takes a deadly turn when their hibernation pods mysteriously wake them 90 years before they reach their destination. As Jim and Aurora try to unravel the mystery behind the malfunction, they begin to fall for each other, unable to deny their intense attraction... only to be threatened by the imminent collapse of the ship and the discovery of the truth behind why they woke up.

Cast:
Jennifer Lawrence
Chris Pratt
Michael Sheen
Laurence Fishburne
Andy Garcia

Monday, 19 September 2016

Free State of Jones starring Matthew McConaughey | Official UK Quad & Clip


Starring Academy Award winner Matthew McConaughey (Dallas Buyers Club, Interstellar), Gugu Mbatha-Raw (Belle, Beyond the Lights), Keri Russell (Mission Impossible III, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes) and Mahershala Ali (The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 & 2), Free State of Jones tells the incredible true story of Newton Knight and his rebellion against the Confederacy in Jones County, Mississippi, during the American Civil War.  Directed by Gary Ross (The Hunger Games, Pleasantville).

Free State of Jones is an epic drama set during the American Civil War and tells the story of defiant Southern farmer, Newt Knight (Academy Award®-winner Matthew McConaughey), and his extraordinary rebellion against the Confederate States Army. Bringing together an unlikely band of poor white farmers and runaway slaves, Knight launched an uprising that led Jones County, Mississippi, to secede from the Confederacy, creating a Free State of Jones. Directed by Gary Ross (Seabiscuit, Pleasantville) and starring Matthew McConaughey (Interstellar), Gugu Mbatha-Raw (Belle) and Mahershala Ali (House of Cards).

Free State of Jones will be released in UK cinemas on September 30th 2016.


The Resurrection of Gavin Stone - Trailer


WWE Hall of Famer Shawn Michaels stars alongside Brett Dalton in WWE Studios' "The Resurrection of Gavin Stone," coming Jan. 20, 2017.

Hunt for the Wilderpeople Movie Review by Carleton Rutter

Director: Taika Waititi
Cast: Sam Neill and Julian Dennison

What’s it all about?

A national manhunt is ordered for a rebellious kid and foster uncle who go missing in the wild New Zealand bush.

What were my thoughts?

Ever since seeing Sam Neill in Jurassic Park (1993), I’ve followed his career with considerable interest. Blockbusters aside, without doubt my favourite movie of his is The Dish (2000) a comedic gem of a movie that tells the story of how the Apollo 11 moon landing were broadcast, thanks to the help of a satellite dish in Parkes, Australia. If you’ve never seen it (You’d very sadly be in the majority) I highly recommend you do.

Anyway, with that independent movie in mind, my interest was piqued for another Neill vehicle, Hunt for the Wilderpeople. The movie has become New Zealand's first local feature to gross more than NZ$1 million in it’s opening weekend at the New Zealand box office. Wilderpeople is the fourth movie for native New Zealand director Waititi, who at time of going to press was busy directing Thor: Ragnorok for Marvel Pictures.

September so far has been a very strong month for movies and has firmly kicked the summer into touch. The Hunt for the Wilderpeople continues the upward trend, it is a true gem of a movie. Blisteringly funny but also poignant and moving.


Front and centre is Julian Dennison as Ricky. A kid who has been shoved from foster home to foster home, never finding the right place. He’s a bit of a wayward kid, but he’s firmly under the “care” of Paula (Rachel House) a over zealous and relatively role obsessed community social worker. Ricky at the start of the movie is left in the care of Bella (Rima Te Wiata) and her grouchy husband Hec (Sam Neill). Although Bella and Ricky click at the start, it’s the prickly relationship between Ricky and Hec that develops throughout as they go "missing" and are hunted down by local law enforcement, which is the focus of the movie.

​Julian Dennison is a revelation and a true break out star that could be destined for great things, this kid is funny and has genuinely great comic timing. Sam Neill who together with a true bushman’s beard is an absolute delight as Hec, the grumpy hard shelled but soft centred foil for the "gangsta" movie obsessed Ricky. They have great chemistry, and it’s great to see their bond grow throughout the movie. The main duo aside, the movie is peppered with wonderful performances from a largely unknown cast to an international audience. My favourite was Rhys Darby as Psycho Sam who helped the duo on the run. He produced perhaps the biggest laugh of the night with reference to an escape tunnel (If you've seen it you'll know what I mean).


The movie itself is split into ten titled chapters. Wilderpeople features delightful unpretentious warm humour that puts the humour of certain bigger movies (Yes Bad Mom’s I’m looking at you), firmly in place. It has an extremely funny script and engaging story. Perhaps one of the funniest moments is a cameo by the director himself as a Priest who delivers perhaps the worlds worst but funniest eulogy. The movie is a mix of the Pixar animated tear jerker Up! (2009), for it’s relationship between a boy and grumpy old man, Moonrise Kingdom (2012) for the quirkiness of it’s humour and Midnight Run (1988) for the element of two people on the run.

Finally, the movie is beautifully shot and features great music that keeps the tone light despite there being some genuinely moving moments.


Hunt for the Wilderpeople is a delightful movie that needs to be seen. It's a classic example of story and writing over action set pieces. Although there is a particularly thrilling and well shot car chase reminiscent of Thelma & Louise (1991).

I highly recommend you check this movie out. Unfortunately though it does have a limited nationwide release so, if you are interested, get in their quick as it will soon be gone.

Hunt for the Wilderpeople is on limited release now in the UK.

Hunt for the Wilderpeople Movie Review by Carleton Rutter

Competition: Win The Nice Guys on DVD

The Nice Guys is released on Bluray and DVD September 26th. And to celebrate we have a great competition for you and 3 copies on DVD to give away.

Synopsis:
Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe team up to investigate the case of a missing girl in this thriller co-written and directed by Shane Black. After becoming involved with the Mob, Amelia (Margaret Qualley) mysteriously disappears. Enforcer Jackson Healy (Crowe) and down-on-his-luck private investigator Holland March (Gosling) are recruited to find her and set out on a complex and high-profile investigation which leads them all over 1970s Los Angeles.

With media interest increasing and their own personal safety called into doubt, the duo come across the seemingly unconnected death of a porn star, a discovery which sheds new light on a conspiracy that leads right to the highest echelons of power. The cast also includes Kim Basinger, Angourie Rice and Matt Bomer.

Win This:
The Nice Guys [DVD]

To enter all you have to do is answer this easy question...


Competition Closed



Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 3-10-16
2. No alternative prize is available
3. When the competition ends as indicated on this page, any and all entries received after this point will not count and emails blacklisted due to not checking this page first.
4. Winners will be chosen randomly and will be informed via email.

Friday, 16 September 2016

Movies set in the Desert


The dry, barren and desolate landscape of the desert often stunts any growth or hope of life, and yet it is these very features that have made the desert such a brilliant setting for a growing number of blockbuster films over the years. From the plains of Jakku seen in the recent Star Wars: Episode VII: The Force Awakens to the sands of Arabia in Lawrence of..., deserts have proven a vast, ominous background on which to paint the insignificance of humans on the big screen.

In this year’s A Hologram For The King we see Tom Hanks play a desperate man who has lost his way in life, and finds himself on a business trip in the bizarre and foreign lands of Saudi Arabia. To celebrate its release on digital platforms (12th September) and DVD (19th September), we have compiled a list of other great movies that are set in the sand...

A Hologram For The King (2016)
Academy Award winner Tom Hanks is a desperate man searching for a way to get his life together in a strange and foreign land in A Hologram For The King. Washed-up, desperate businessman Alan Clay (Hanks) is sent on a business trip to a building in the middle of the Saudi Arabian desert where he hopes to sell a state-of-the-art 3D holographic meeting system to the nation’s King. Adapted from Dave Eggers’ novel of the same name, A Hologram For The King marks the second collaboration between Hanks and visionary director Tom Tykwer following their pairing on Cloud Atlas. With another tour-de-force performance from cinema’s greatest everyman at its heart, the film serves as inherent evidence that sometimes you have to change your scenery to change your life.

127 Hours (2011)
Based on an utterly incredible true story, 127 Hours follows canyoneer Aron Ralston’s (James Franco) trek across Utah’s Canyonlands National Park and his subsequent 127 hours of entrapment by a boulder in an isolated slot canyon. Danny Boyle, who wrote and directed, decided to use independent found footage from the perspective of Aron’s video camera to build a daunting sense of isolation and doom whilst his arm is trapped in the boulder. The desperate measures that Aron resorts to in order to survive are truly horrifying and earned the film six Academy Award nominations.

Three Kings (1999)
Three Kings is David O. Russell’s satirical black comedy war film starring George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg, Ice Cube and Spike Jonze as four U.S. soldiers on a gold heist that takes place during the 1991 Iraqi uprising against Saddam Hussein, post-Persian Gulf War. However as they are about to make their getaway they come across a group of Iraqi prisoners who desperately need their help. The prisoners are freed, but Iraqi Republican Guard reinforcements soon arrive to thwart the escape of the Americans and their new rebel friends.

Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope (1977)
Whilst The Force Awakens could also feature in this list of top movie deserts we went for the original’s vast sands of Tatooine. These scenes were filmed in the Sahara Desert in Tunisia, and feature droids R2-D2 and C-3PO being captured by Jawa traders and sold to a young man named Luke Skywalker. The rest is history...

Lawrence of Arabia (1962)
Perhaps the most infamous film set in the desert and one of the most critically acclaimed films of all time, Lawrence of Arabia is the historical epic starring the legendary Peter O’Toole in the titular role. Based on the real life of British author, archaeologist, military officer and diplomat T. E. Lawrence, the film sees Lawrence successfully unite and lead the diverse and often warring Arab tribes during World War I in order to fight the Turks. The film won seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Cinematography, for its fascinating depiction of the mythic Lawrence amongst the beautiful Arabian deserts.

Sahara (1943) 
This 1943 Humphrey Bogart war drama follows Sergeant Joe Gunn (Bogart) and his American tank crew, who pick up a motley crew consisting of five British soldiers, a Frenchman and a Sudanese man with an Italian prisoner whilst crossing the Libyan Desert to rejoin their command after the fall of Tobruk in WWII. Their biggest threat is the lack of water but having finally found a well, they have to deal with advancing Nazis who are also in dire need of water. Rather than flee however, they decide to stand their ground and face the battalion strength enemy.

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A HOLOGRAM FOR THE KING IS AVAILABLE ON DIGITAL PLATFORMS FROM 12TH SEPTEMBER, AND ON DVD FROM 19TH SEPTEMBER

Thursday, 15 September 2016

The Pass - First Trailer

THE PASS

After opening the prestigious BFI Flare Festival, THE PASS will be presented as part of the BFI London Film Festival before being released in cinemas December 2016.

THE PASS is a British drama from debut Director Ben A. Williams, starring Russell Tovey (Looking, Being Human, The History Boys) and Arinze Kene.

THE PASS is adapted for the screen by John Donnelly from his hit play first presented at the Royal Court Theatre, THE PASS is produced by renowned British film producer Duncan Kenworthy (Four Weddings and a Funeral, Notting Hill, Love Actually, The Eagle).

THE PASS is the story of three very different nights over 10 years in the life of a Premier League Footballer. Jason (Russell Tovey) is at the beginning of his career, and on the night before his first big international match he and long-time friend and team-mate Ade (Arinze Kene) share a hotel room, trying to beat the inevitable pre-match tensions with locker-room banter and teenage high-jinks. Out of nowhere Jason kisses Ade. The emotional repercussions of this pass, and the decisions that follow on and off the pitch, have a major impact on every aspect of the public and private lives of both men across the next decade, in a sporting world where image is everything.

The cast includes Hollyoaks heart-throb Nico Mirallegro and theatre and TV actress Lisa McGrillis. Tovey, McGrillis and Mirallegro all reprise the roles they originally performed on stage.

THE PASS will be released in the UK by Lionsgate Films.

Tickets are on sale to the 60th BFI London Film Festival from today at 10am.

For ticket enquiries, please visit:
https://whatson.bfi.org.uk/lff/Online/

Tom Hanks Retrospective


With two Academy Awards, a filmography that has grossed over 8.5 billion dollars, and arguably one of the most loveable faces on the faces of the planet, Tom Hanks has certainly had a career that most actors would give arm for.  His latest film A Hologram For the King, is an inspirational story of a man struggling to turn his life around in a foreign land, based on Dave Eggers novel of the same name.  Available on digital platforms on 12th September and on Blu-ray and DVD from 19th September, 2016, A Hologram For The King features a Tom Hanks performance that audiences have come to treasure from his catalogue of classic films over the years. In order to truly appreciate the man himself, we’re taking a look back at some of his most iconic roles, and be assured that narrowing it down to this list was no easy task.

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A Hologram For The King (2016)
In many of the films of this list, Hanks serves as a leader and authoritarian, but in A Hologram For The King he plays a man struggling to find his purpose in the world, lost both figuratively and physically in the foreign land of Saudi Arabia. Alan Clay (Hanks) hopes to sell a state-of-the-art 3D holographic meeting system to the nation’s King. But once he begins work he quickly learns that he will have to adapt to a different culture and way of doing business in order to be successful. After suffering a panic attack in his hotel room, Alan meets a beautiful Saudi Doctor whose presence has a profound effect, leading him to question the path his life has taken. Hanks’ signature charm and depth guides us on an inspirational journey of self discovery, leading to the conclusion that there really is nothing this man can’t do.

Big (1988)
Before the days of the multiple prestigious awards coming out of his ears, Mr. Hanks was making hearts around the world melt as a child who was magically turned into a grown man overnight. Still living with 13-year-old’s mentality, Josh (Hanks) decides to hide out in New York City until he can figure out what to do next. He lucks into a job with a major toy company run by kid-at-heart McMillan (Robert Loggia) and falls in love with fellow employee Susan (Elizabeth Perkins). But still a kid, he becomes desperate to go back to being scruffy teenager. Hanks brought his trademark wit and playfulness to the film, and it’s hard to imagine anyone else being able to play a giant keyboard with his feet as well as he does.

Saving Private Ryan (1998)
Steven Spielberg’s legendary WWII epic may be known primarily for its extremely intense and disturbing 24-minute long battle sequence on the beaches of Normandy, but at the films heart is a very grounded and relatable performance from Mr. Hanks. The film follows a group of soldiers led by Captain Miller (Hanks), who have been charged with the task of saving a young soldier fighting in France by the name of (you guessed it) Private Ryan, whose three brothers have been killed in battle, and bring him home to his family. The film won five  Oscars in total but what was most notable about the ceremony was that it missed out on ‘Best Picture’ to Shakespeare In Love, which is still remembered as one of the biggest Oscar upsets in history. The film has proven to stand the test of time though, with Hank’s performance being one of the best of his career.

Toy Story (1995), Toy Story 2 (1999) and Toy Story 3 (2010)
After all of Pixar’s success, awards and rave reviews for their many delightful films, the standard set by incredible moving and nostalgic Toy Story series still sets the bar. Hanks voices the charming cowboy doll Woody, who is seen as a leader of sorts for a group of toys who come to life when no one is looking. But when their owner Andy get’s a new action figure for his birthday in the shape of Buzz Lightyear, he starts to lose his place as the ‘favourite toy’. It’s hard to imagine that Toy Story was so innovative in its field when it was released in 1995, but with every summer holiday now coming with a flurry of animated films, Hanks and co. paved the way for many childhoods of the future. As much as we’re assured otherwise, we still can’t completely trust that Action Men and Barbies don’t come to life when we leave the room...

Forest Gump (1994)
They say a career is never complete without a role that encourages millions of people around the world to impersonate nearly every line from the film in a ridiculous voice. If that’s true then Hanks has managed to complete that task with the title role in Robert Zemeckis’s film Forest Gump. The films follows Gump, a special child not quite like everyone else, from a young age right through to becoming a father, as he finds himself in many troubling and often enlightening times through 1960’s America, with the film acting as a strong critique of US History. Hanks gives a heart breaking performance that ended up winning him an Oscar, showing the importance of some much needed innocence in the world during a time of so much chaos and darkness.

Captain Philips (2013)
With Paul Greengrass’s high-seas thriller Captain Phillips, the film needed a hero that instead of being muscle-bound and born with superpowers, was above all else brave and relatable, and Hanks fits that bill perfectly. Based on the true story of the 2009 hijacking of U.S. container ship Maersk Alabama by a crew of Somali pirates, the film not only works as an gripping and tense modern day action-thriller, but also successfully attempts to dissect deeper themes of poverty and globalisation. The film is worth watching for the truly heartbreaking final scene that is enough to make even the most stubborn Somali pirate break down into floods of tears.

Cast Away (2000)
This intense drama about one man’s struggles to survive after being shipwrecked on a desert island can be summed up in one word: WILSON! Hanks manages to keep our full attention in a film that features only him for 90% of the film, along with a brilliantly understated performance from his volley ball friend. Of all the films Hanks has done in his career this is probably the most intense of them all, showing incredible determination to save himself from the island and get back home. In Cast Away, Hanks made us laugh, cry and learn how to appreciate the modern day dentist, a magnificently rounded performance.

A HOLOGRAM FOR THE KING IS AVAILABLE ON DIGITAL PLATFORMS ON 12TH SEPTEMBER AND ON BLU-RAY AND DVD FROM 19TH SEPTEMBER, 2016

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

SCENE STEALING DEBUTS: THE OLDER CROWD EDITION


It’s a well-trodden path in the film industry: A talented child goes to stage school; earns a part in a small movie; then works their way up. By the time they’re in their teens their CV is longer than most will achieve in a lifetime – and they’re only just getting started. See Jennifer Lawrence, Dakota Fanning, Ansel Elgort, Liam Hemsworth and Daniel Radcliffe for reference.

However some take a little longer to blossom, such as 32 year-old Alexander Black, who steals the show as Tom Hanks’ affable, quick-witted sidekick/taxi driver Yousef, in A Hologram For The King. Black, who is a stand-up comedian by trade, beat thousands to earn his first co-leading man credit – and as the film attests, he has truly found his niche on the big screen.

To celebrate the release of A Hologram For The King on digital platforms from 12th September and on DVD from 19th September, we have compiled a list of very well-known names who, like Black, have taken a little longer to find the road to success.


Melissa McCarthy (Bridesmaids, 2011)
One of the hottest comedy actors of the moment, Melissa McCarthy is surprisingly new to the big screen. Having cut her teeth in TV institution Gilmore Girls from 2000 – 2007, McCarthy went on to star in Mike & Molly (2010 – 2016), which earned her a Primetime Emmy for Lead Actress. However it was 2011’s smash hit comedy Bridesmaids that catapulted her into the mainstream. As wise-cracking tomboy Megan, McCarthy was the antithesis to characters like Rose Byrne’s prim and proper Helen; introducing audiences to her unique brand of self-deprecating, dry comedy along the way.

Kristen Wiig (Knocked Up, 2007)
Another from the illustrious cast of Bridesmaids, Kristen Wiig’s silver screen career started out in Judd Apatow’s 2007 comedy Knocked Up, playing her first significant film role at the age of 34. In the role of Jill, Wiig had enough to work with to show off her impeccable comic timing, which undoubtedly proved a springboard for her career. One of the main players during a hugely successful era on Saturday Night Live (whose alumni includes Tina Fey and Amy Poehler) followed, before major roles in Bridesmaids, Girl Most Likely and The Martian, amongst numerous other credits cemented her position in the elusive club of Hollywood’s bankable film actresses.

Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years A Slave, 2012)
Perhaps the most sensational example of a scene stealing debut is Lupita Nyong’o, who won an Academy Award for her debut film role of Patsey in Steve McQueen’s 2012 film 12 Years A Slave. Born in Mexico to Kenyan parents, Nyong’o is the first Mexican and Kenyan actress to ever win an Oscar – an exceptional feat given her relative inexperience. Since her incredible debut, Nyong’o’s career has sky rocketed, with roles in one of the biggest franchises of all time, Star Wars (The Force Awakens in 2015 and Star Wars: VIII in 2017) and 2016’s beautiful re-imagining of The Jungle Book to her name.

Steve Carrell (Bruce Almighty, 2003)
Another late starter, like Alexander Black, Steve Carrell was a comedian before turning his hand to TV and then film work. A long-term regular on Saturday Night Live – where Carrell met his comedy partner in crime and 30 Rock co-star, Tina Fey – Carrell’s breakthrough role came in 2003’s Bruce Almighty, playing the role of Evan Baxter alongside Jim Carrey. This was a role Carrell later reprised – and perhaps might rather forget owing to the film’s scant box office performance – in 2007’s Evan Almighty. 2004’s Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy saw Carrell play weatherman Brick Tamland. With his big screen career gathering momentum Carrell went on to play further comedy roles in hits such as The 40 Year Old Virgin and Date Night, as well as showing his versatility in dramas such as Little Miss Sunshine and The Way Way Back, before he earned an Oscar nomination through his stunning, shape-shifting performance as John Du Pont in Foxcatcher.

Jeremy Renner (The Hurt Locker, 2008)
Whilst far from being his first film role, Jeremy Renner’s performance in Kathryn Bigelow’s multiple award-winning, powerful 2008 drama The Hurt Locker signified a turning point in his career; making Hollywood sit up and take notice. His performance as Staff Sergeant William James earned him a leading actor Academy Award nomination, and was swiftly followed by a further Oscar nomination – this time for his supporting role in Ben Affleck’s 2010 film, The Town. Renner’s star rose so quickly that in 2010 The Hollywood Reporter named him as one of a crop of young male actors who were “pushing – or being pushed” into taking over Hollywood and becoming ‘the new A-list’. It seems they weren’t far wrong.

Alan Rickman (Die Hard, 1988)
The late Alan Rickman was a stalwart of both British and US cinema. However it took him longer than some to make the leap from small to big screen – and leap he did, with a storming performance as Hans Gruber in 1988’s Die Hard at the tender age of 42. Rickman’s screen credits from that moment forth are too numerous to mention, but he will of course be remembered for his performance as the mysterious Severus Snape in the Harry Potter film series; amongst his incredibly diverse filmography which included Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Sense and Sensibility and Love, Actually.

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A HOLOGRAM FOR THE KING IS AVAILABLE ON DIGITAL PLATFORMS FROM 12TH SEPTEMBER, AND ON DVD FROM 19TH SEPTEMBER

Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Poster and Trailer for Drake Doremus' EQUALS, starring Kristen Stewart and Nicholas Hoult.


EQUALS takes place in a colourless, post-apocalyptic society - known as The Collective - where its inhabitants have been genetically modified between conception and birth to be "emotion-free.”  Consequently, emotion, love, and sex have been outlawed.

Silas (Nicholas Hoult), an illustrator in The Collective, mysteriously starts experiencing feelings and realises he has become afflicted with "Switched-On-Syndrome." As Silas is grappling with his new, undisclosed condition, he finds himself drawn to Nia (Kristen Stewart), a fiction writer, who he soon discovers is also emotionally alive, and also hiding the condition.

EQUALS stars Kristen Stuart, Nicholas Hoult, Bel Powley and Guy Pearce and is directed by Drake Doremus.

Official poster and trailer for highly anticipated documentary DE PALMA - in cinemas 23 September


Directed by Noah Baumbach (Mistress America, Frances Ha) and Jake Paltrow (Young Ones, The Good Night) the documentary explores De Palma’s life, work and approach as a filmmaker through fascinating discussions with Brian De Palma himself.

One of the most talented, influential, and iconoclastic filmmakers of all time, Brian De Palma’s career started in the 60s and has included such acclaimed and diverse films as Carrie, Dressed to Kill, Blow Out, Scarface, The Untouchables, Carlito’s Way, and Mission: Impossible. In this lively, illuminating and unexpectedly moving documentary, directors Noah Baumbach and Jake Paltrow engage in a personal and candid discussion with De Palma, exploring not only his life and work but also his singular approach to the craft of filmmaking and his remarkable experiences navigating the film business, from his early days as the bad boy of New Hollywood to his more recent years as a respected veteran of the field. In the end, what emerges is a funny, honest, and incisive portrait of a truly one-of-a-kind artist, and an exhilarating behind-the-scenes look at the last 50 years of the film industry through the eyes of someone who has truly seen it all.

DE PALMA will be released in UK cinemas on 23 September 2016

Competition: Win Solar Warriors on Blu-ray

Solar Warriors is released on Blu-ray October 17th And to celebrate we have a great competition for you and 3 copies on Bluray to give away.

Synopsis:
For the first time available in the UK on Blu-Ray.

In the future, a nuclear war has left Earth as a desert wasteland, where the ocean has dried up. The world is now ruled by a sinister corporation known as the E-Protectorate. Beyond ruthless, they hoard water and take children from their families to train them to work for the corporation.

But when a group of young rebels discover an extraterrestrial sphere with healing powers, they set out to release the planet from the clutches of the oppressors. With its dazzling visual effects and mesmerizing score, Solarbabies is pure entertainment from start to finish.

Win This:
Solar Warriors [Blu-ray]

To enter all you have to do is answer this easy question...


Competition Closed

Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 24-10-16
2. No alternative prize is available
3. When the competition ends as indicated on this page, any and all entries received after this point will not count and emails blacklisted due to not checking this page first.
4. Winners will be chosen randomly and will be informed via email.

Competition: Win Deliverance on DVD

Deliverance is released on DVD September 19. And to celebrate we have a great competition for you and 3 copies on DVD to give away.

Synopsis:
A gun-slinging preacher returns to the debaucherously town of Playa Diablo seeking revenge from the notorious scorpion-venom drinking bandito El Sobero, a descendent of a disciple of King Tavatta - the Scorpion King from the ancient world.

El Sobero and his band of bad banditos are also returning to Playa Diablo seeking their own revenge against the town sheriff for putting a bounty on their heads and subsequently shooting all of their horses.

With the Bounty Hunter dragging up slowly behind there is sure to be a confrontation of Biblical proportions as they all meet in the circle of death. This is The Legend of God's Gun...

Win This:
Deliverance [DVD]

To enter all you have to do is answer this easy question...


Competition Closed

Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 26-09-16
2. No alternative prize is available
3. When the competition ends as indicated on this page, any and all entries received after this point will not count and emails blacklisted due to not checking this page first.
4. Winners will be chosen randomly and will be informed via email.

HEART-BREAKING WORKS OF STAGGERING GENIUS – THE WORK OF DAVE EGGERS ON FILM


Many will be more than aware of Dave Eggers’ literary genius thanks to his show-stopping debut, the autobiographical and very aptly named ‘A Heart-Breaking Work of Staggering Genius’. Genuinely heart-rending as much as it is brutally honest and very, very funny, the book charts Eggers’ efforts to take charge of his younger brother, Topher, following the cancer-related deaths of both of their parents and was a worldwide bestseller. A literary career flourished from there but many people are less familiar with Eggers’ work on the silver screen where he has forged a career both as a screenwriter to watch as well as having some of his literary works adapted for the screen, such as A Hologram For The King, coming to digital platforms on September 12th and DVD and Blu-ray on September 19th. Here we take a look at some of cinema’s interpretations of this unique voice:

A Hologram For The King (2016)
Tom Hanks brings his everyman charm to a tale, based on Eggers’ novel of the same name, which follows a failed sales rep looking to recoup his losses by flogging a state of the art holographic communications system to a filthy rich Saudi Arabian monarch. A chance encounter with a beautiful Saudi Arabian woman, however, causes him to examine his life and his plans for the future, sending him on a journey of self-discovery that will have a profound effect. Treading a gently dramatic path, Tom Tykwer’s meditation on middle age and new beginnings marks the second time he and Hanks have teamed up following the incomprehensibly brilliant Cloud Atlas, with A Hologram For The King proving itself an altogether more accessible and wonderfully engaging affair for Hanks fans everywhere.

Promised Land (2012) 
Dave Eggers provided the story for this 2012 indie drama about a gas company salesman (what is it with Eggers and salesmen?) who undergoes an epiphany after arriving in a small town his company want to plunder for its natural resources. Directed by the legendary Gus Van Sant (My Own Private Idaho), Promised Land features an all-star cast, with Matt Damon (Jason Bourne) taking the lead opposite the ever-impressive Frances McDormand (Fargo) and John Krasinski (The Office), with Golden Age hero Hal Holbrook (Capricorn One) bringing up the rear.

Away We Go (2009) screenplay
Criminally unseen on its release, Away We Go has at least had the good grace to build up something of a cult following since. This was Eggers’ first original screenplay but that didn’t prevent Sam Mendes stepping in to direct a funny, touching and honest portrayal of a couple looking for the perfect place to raise their first child. John Krasinski (him again) and Maya Rudolph (Bridesmaids) star as the central couple whilst the supporting cast reads like a wish list of indie giants, with the likes of Allison Janney (The Way Way Back), Jeff Daniels (The Martian), Maggie Gyllenhaal  (The Secretary), and Catherine O’Hara reminding everyone why they are always brilliant. Essential viewing and a clear marker that Eggers isn’t just a talent on paper.

Where The Wild Things Are (2009) screenplay
Maurice Sendak’s childhood classic about Max, a boy who runs into his own monster-filled imagination to escape a row with his parents, has become a stalwart for children and their parents everywhere but not something that immediately lends itself to a feature film. Step forward Dave Eggers, who wrote a simply beautiful screenplay that at once captures the story and elevates it for cinema audiences, with the ever-eclectic Spike Jonze behind the camera. Whimsical, wistful and utterly charming, the distinctly low-fi take on Sendak’s text delivers a dream-like quality, whilst the much-missed James Gandolfini (The Sopranos) provides his vocal talents as the leader of the Wild Things who takes Max under his wing. Paul Dano (Swiss Army Man) and Catherine O’Hara (A Mighty Wind) provide the voices of the other creatures.

Forthcoming: 
A busy man indeed, Eggers won’t be away from cinema screens for too long, with two more projects in development from some of his fascinating and beloved novels, including:

Zeitoun
Currently in development stages, this drama follows a Syrian-born painting contractor who, while assisting in the post-Hurricane Katrina rescue efforts, finds himself suspected of being a terrorist. The film was once rumoured to be helmed by Silence of the Lambs director Johnathan Demme as an animated feature, but now it appears the project is searching for a director, and it will be interesting to see whose talented hands this intriguing and moving story falls into.

The Circle
Tom Hanks once again star in this adaptation of Eggers’ novel alongside Emma Watson, with the story following a woman called Mae who lands a job at a powerful tech company called The Circle where she becomes involved with a mysterious man. After becoming excited by her early experience at the company, things begin to rapidly fall apart in this novel that clearly takes inspiration from the increasingly social media driven world that surrounds us and even aspects of a certain Mr. Snowden’s time at the NSA. Put this one on your ‘To See’ list for 2017...

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A Hologram For The King arrives on digital platforms on September 12th and DVD and Blu-ray on September 19th

Competition: Win A Hologram For The King on Bluray

A Hologram For The King is released on DVD & Bluray September 19th. And to celebrate we have a great competition for you and 3 copies on Bluray to give away.

Synopsis:
Light-hearted comedy drama starring Tom Hanks as struggling American businessman Alan Clay. Desperate to recoup lost earnings and pay for his daughter's tuition fees, Clay travels to Saudi Arabia in an attempt to secure a lucrative IT contract with a wealthy Saudi king.

After discovering on arrival that the king hasn't visited the development in 18 months and, facing the sack, Clay must find the money and willpower to make his project a success and turn his fortunes around. The cast also includes Ben Whishaw, Sarita Choudhury, Tom Skerritt and Sidse Babett Knudsen.

Win This:
A Hologram For The King [Blu-ray]

To enter all you have to do is answer this easy question...


Competition Closed

Terms and conditions
1. Closing date 26-09-16
2. No alternative prize is available
3. When the competition ends as indicated on this page, any and all entries received after this point will not count and emails blacklisted due to not checking this page first.
4. Winners will be chosen randomly and will be informed via email.





Monday, 12 September 2016

IRIS PRIZE 2016 TRAILERS FOR ALL COMPETING SHORT FILMS

The Iris Prize has created a tantalising taste of what's to come at this year's festival by releasing two trailers that reveal both the 35 international short films competing for this year's prestigious £30,000 prize as well as the 15 short films nominated for the Iris Prize Best of British Award. The festival which is celebrating its tenth anniversary takes place in Cardiff and runs 12th – 16th October.
Supported by The Michael Bishop Foundation, the Iris Prize, Cardiff's International LGBT Short Film Prize continues to be the world's largest international LGBT short film prize.  Twenty-five of the 35 films have been nominated by the respective number of partner festivals with 10 chosen by a pre-selection jury from a record number of over 300 films entered through open submissions. 
Here's a taster from all the films:                      
                                                                                              
Official trailer 2016 Iris Prize international montage:  https://youtu.be/-IYZ0vXDb_w                           
 The accompanying musical soundtrack is by Singapore-based Welsh teenager, These Brittle Bones (Chris Jones)

This year's selection explores LGBT stories from all corners of the globe including many stories that address the concerns of growing old and explore darker themes from the horror genre, Sweden, Italy, Russia, Australia, Ireland, Spain, India, US, Canada, and for the first time, Taiwan.

In addition, 15 short films are competing for the Iris Prize Best British Short, worth £20,000 and sponsored by Pinewood Studios Group.  These have been selected from a record number of over 100 submissions from all areas of the UK and they take us from teenage years to old age, encountering bullies, drug abuse, lifelong love, random acts of kindness and zombies.

Here's a teasing glimpse of all 15 films:                                                                                                                                                      
Official trailer for 2016 Iris Prize Best of British montage:  https://youtu.be/epgPrr570qI

The winners will be announced at a lavish awards ceremony on Sunday 16 October at Park Inn City Centre Hotel. This is also the venue for a unique multi-media experience and photographic exhibition by Jon Pountney, supported by Ffotogallery and British Council Wales, which celebrates a decade of Iris film productions.  The exhibition tours around the world in 2017.

In addition, there are a number of feature films being screened as well as a varied programme of education events, the popular Producers Forum offering a day of insightful seminars from significant industry professionals, public talks, networking receptions, and musical performances. The main venues for all festival activity are Cardiff's Cineworld and Chapter Arts Centre.

Box office is now open:  http://www.irisprize.org/the-festival/box-office/
Full list of films and all programme details can be found at : www.irisprize.org
Facebook:   IrisPrizeFestival   twitter:  @irisprize